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Full text of "The History Of Western Education"

THE EIGHTEENTH CENTURY              323

evolutionary stages similar to those exemplified in the growth of
a plant, Pestalozzi perceived that there existed an intimate relation
between the development of humanity as a whole and the develop-
ment of the individual human being, and so was able to give a
new meaning and value to the process of individual education.
In this way he was led beyond the individualism of Rousseau to
a more adequate conception of the dependence of the child on
society for the stimulus to personal growth in mind and spirit.
The teacher, therefore, occupies a more important place in his
scheme, and the necessity for an Art of Education to mediate
between the child and society, and to bring the child up to the
adult level, is more clearly recognized.

But the advance made by Pestalozzi was by no means confined
to such theoretical considerations as these. Pe§falo&si was first
and foremost a practical man, with his mind set on the reform
of educational practice; and some of his most influential contri-
butions to. education ^ere.made in the sphere of method where
he worked in greatest independence of Rousseau. In this respect
his treatment of the first stages in the training of the child were
most valuable. The question with which he began, both with
regard to knowing and doing, concerned the elements of instruc-
tion. In respect of knowledge — with which he mainly deals in
Haw Gertrude Teaches Her Children — he was inclined at first to
follow the common opinion and take reading, writing and arith-
fiiettc as the elements ; but further reflection showed that each
of~these presupposed something still simpler. Beforejthe child
reads he speaks, before he writes he draws^and so on. Ultimately,
^her sawTEat the starting-points in the various branches^of instruc-
tion must be determined by the general course taken by the mind
in itsTgrowth ; and liere it seemed to him there

marked stages. T^jnind begins with vague sense impressions.
'^Jp^^orld^ lies before our eyes %e_a sea of confused seTSsel^-
pressions. flowing into one another." ^Then the sense impressions

ijT-wiv-- . — ***   ^,.^^,-^Q--** ^> ~-.   ,-     ^ -^vK>vr&          •»*• --- - -       „         ,--,-  -, ------ fZ— >•-•   - --

grow distinct : certain objects begins to stand outjrom^ the mass
drseii^tfbSs, and to take incfivrdual fbrriTas units of experience.
Arffieliext stage in the evolution these distinct impressions turn
clear. Clearness imgliesjiiat the fonnjtnd other sensory qualities
^oFtfiingglSrn^                             by "Sbe,^^i^^r^ is the

'jSEaygSSmj^^TT^ie^ chlra^eFpfthings is still unfenownT
TEFcSoapletion of the process of mental growth is effected when